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Today we introduce a new feature, Atlas Insider, bringing you the latest from MDK’s home base on Atlas Drive in Nashville. Here’s DG Strong, who is a master shipper and also writes about books, movies, and TV for MDK. Plus: there’s a giveaway!

—Kay and Ann

If you’ve ordered from us recently, you’ve probably seen a copy of our fancy little warehouse-news publication Tidbits, wherein we refer to our building as “MDK World Headquarters.” That makes it sound like an enormous, multi-level complex, which in actuality, it really is.

It’s certainly bigger than our previous digs, which amounted to 800 square feet and a shipping container stuck onto the back of the building.

When we moved in eight months ago, we never thought we’d use all the square footage. Well, we were mistaken. It now closely resembles the climactic shot of Raiders of the Lost Ark, only instead of valuable apocalypse-related archeological artifacts, it’s, well, chock full of yarn.

CHOCK FULL OF YARN, y’all. Red yarn and green yarn and orange yarn and brown, brown, brown yarn.

But mostly, it is full of blue yarn. At least it seems that way.

But to say it’s “full of blue yarn” oversimplifies the situation in an almost comical fashion. It’s not just “blue.” It’s “Fjord.” And “Stone.” And “Delft.” And “Ocean.” And on and on and on, like waves. Sorry, “Waves.”

So. Much. Blue.

There are even colors that sound blue but are not, like “Frostbite,” which is actually green. Let me tell you: that throws us every time into double-check mode before we seal up your order. We have a secret theory that “Frostbite” was intended to be called “Gangrene,” but someone got their medical terms mixed up.

Thinking about the five thousand and seven different names for blue yarn got us thinking about the Paint Chip Paradox, which is a soon-to-be-world-famous psychological color theory developed by Yours Truly.

The Paint Chip Paradox

The idea is that the more specific the color name of the paint chip you pick up on an ambitious Saturday afternoon trip to Home Depot (who are you kidding? You’re not going to finish that this weekend!), the more it will remind you of something else when it’s finally slathered all over your plaster walls.

I once agonized over the precise color of green I wanted to paint a study. (“Lettuce Leaf.” “Verdant Hill.” “Bread Mold.”) In the end I was swayed by “Nomad’s Trail” in glossy enamel, which—once painted on the walls—put me less in mind of an arduous ancient journey with saddlebags full of tea leaves and more in mind of, well, “Prison Cafeteria.” 

But hey, it was glossy enamel, which would come in handy if a food-related riot ever broke out in there. Unlikely, but you never know. There was once quite a scene when someone failed to return a book to me in a timely fashion (YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE), so sometimes, all bets are off.

As we fill your orders (thank you!) each day, we sometimes hazard guesses about how you might be using “Beach Glass” or “Lapis” or “Avatar.” We hope you love it! But if you don’t, remember: it’s easier to order a different color of yarn and re-knit a few rows than it is to repaint an entire room. All these years later, my study is still painted “Nomad’s Trail.” I’ve learned to live with it.

A Giveaway

In the interest of getting you to think about blue yarn, here’s a little giveaway.

The prize? A batch of blue yarn, fresh from MDK World Headquarters.

How to enter? Two steps:

Step 1: Sign up for our weekly newsletter, Snippets, right here. If you’re already subscribed, you’re set.

Step 2: Leave a comment below with the most unusual/memorable/nutty yarn color name you have encountered in your knitting journey. I swear Rowan named a color Grief. Or was it Gravel? 

Deadline for entries: Sunday, May 2, 11:59 PM Central time. We’ll draw a random winner from the entries. Winner will be notified by email.

About The Author

DG Strong took up knitting in 2014. He lives in Nashville with his sister, her rat terrier and a hound dog named Opal. He has a blog of drawings and faintly ridiculous rambling called The Psychopedia—there are worse ways to spend your afternoon.

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  • Pea Soup Mix!

    • Local dyer — a beautiful orangey mix called Fire on the Beach.
      Also bought a zauberball at least in part for the name, Tropical Fish.

    • Lolabean Plumiting upward or Ooogie Boogie

    • Garden party

      • Keel-BilledToucan by Naima Bond

      • “I can see your undies.”

    • Voolenvine’s Mexican Hot Chocolate is memorable- I love the cocoa & the color.

    • Forty Whacks, deep red splattered on gray by BlackCat Fibers.

      • Rebel Princess Pop Rox. One of the great yarn color names by Candy Skeins.

    • Message in a bottle, lapwing and nailed it – those names made me buy it. Gray -green matched but they really could have done better.

    • Wet Cement

      • “Thar she blows” or something like that.

      • A shade of blue: Trendy AF

      • Zombie BBQ

      • I’ve always liked Composition Book Grey (Madeline Tosh), but AT Haynes House Yarns has some really imaginative names!

    • Unicorn barf

      • Lacey, the creator Knitting the Card Game, used to give her yarn the most wonderful names. Urban Apiary, Stalagmite, Boro, Indigo Night Owl- but my absolute favorite was Don’t Panic, which was released in early 2017.

      • I have that one, too.

        • A shieking bright fuschia-red called “Boosh”

  • The name of a yarn that comes immediately to mind was “Sorry, Not Sorry”. I can’t recall the colors or even why it makes me chuckle but it has stuck in my memory. ❤️

    • 2 all-time favorite names:
      Bitter Malaise (yarn store friends thought we should form an all-girl band with the name) – and – Damp Pillow…(eeew!)
      It’s my secret dream to get to name yarn colors.

    • Neveruary from Spincycle because that’s when and where I am when I get really involved in a project

      • Rowan kidsilk haze has a color Grace, my daughter’s name and her favorite color.

      • The blue yarn I had to buy was Paris Night by Malabrigo. I also bought a gray one called cement.

      • A German sock yarn I once loved had Harry Potter on the label and no English words! I still have the socks, somewhere.

    • In a line of yarns that cleverly captured characters/places in the Netflix series Stranger Things – Mr. Hooper was a classic!

  • My favorite color name ,so far, is from Lorna’s Laces – Robot Overlord.

    • Muse 2320 has a great color called “Kitchen Sink”. And by golly it reminds me of the kitchen sink of my childhood.

  • Unicorn vomit. It was a truly accurate description 🙂

  • Plucky Yarn has great names. 2 blue favorites: Make a Grown Man Cry and Grumpy Old Sailor.

  • I think the funniest one I JUST HAD TO HAVE was from my very first yarn crawl in Seattle where I picked up a Knitted Wit Victory sock yarn called Unicorn Farts. Who wouldn’t want to wear something from a unicorn fart after all?

    • Haha! That’s funny! That’s the exact same yarn I just named in my comment! I bought it at a shop in Portland, Oregon. Same reaction – well, we JUST HAVE TO HAVE THAT!

  • Radioactive Zombie

  • Speaking of my knitting journey, “Love That Journey For Me” (think Alexis Rose)

  • Beaver Beach and Botulism

  • Mean Mr. Mustard from the Green Mountain Spinnery Mewesic base. Wonderful yarn, great color.

    • Sleeps in the park….

  • Too much Aperol Spritz

  • I’ve had many but the first one that comes to mind is — Unicorn Poop

  • On a more prosaic note you have me making blue color lists (Sapphire Surprise, Blues in the Night..). It will take me awhile to graduate to Unicorn anything. Although recently I was captivated by beautiful sweater in a murky shade of something called Fourth of July. Maybe that’s the way for me to go. I do know my holidays.

  • Care Bare Dare Stare! Renee from Spin Right Round has some great ones and this is a favorite. Did you have a Care Bear back in the day?

    • Darn auto correct. Care Bear Dare Stare. Not Bare.

      • Frankenmuth!

  • Sorry Briar Rose. On second viewing Fourth of July was not murky at all. Rather an exuberant shade of red. It was just set against a murky ( in the BEST sense) of brown giving the overall impression of subtly exuberant murkiness. (I think the combination for that particular very bold pattern was genius, truly).

    • Grumpy Old Sailor (The Plucky Knitter)

    • Fourth of July is the name of the yarn. Their colorways usually have numbers. It’s a wonderful yarn to knit with. And I agree, in photographs it can look murky. See it in sunlight and it’s amazing! (I wonder if that’s why they have an outdoor booth at Rhinebeck?)

      • Likity Split

  • One day in our knitting group I was working with a self striping yarn in a rainbow made up of tropical shades. One of the other knitters asked me what was the color name. I couldn’t remember, so while I hunted for the ball band, the group ventured guesses – coming up with hilarious possibilities. After a few minutes I emerged from my project bag and triumphantly announced the actual color: 26!

    After a second of stunned silence we all just fell apart! (I miss my Friday knitting group.)

  • Mouthy Goldfish from Hue Loco makes me chuckle 🙂

    • Into The Whirled had a color “Don’t Even Blink”. Dr Who fans will understand…

      • I LOVE blue yarn and all the creative yarn names out there! Hipster Scum and Boom Boom aren’t blue but I love the names by Old Rusted Chair who dyes “eye-catching colorways with my advocacy work as a clinic escort for Planned Parenthood”. She’s got quite the stories and more interesting yarn names which I won’t post here but she is awesome!

        • I immediately thought of one of her more interesting names that I won’t repeat either but it’s certainly the most ‘colorful’ name I can think of.

  • Hi! I bought yarn called Supreme Black Dalek. That’s from Dr. Who. Yes, it’s a variegated yarn like the colors of a Dalek.
    Yarn company: Socks That Rock.

  • I have a soon-to-be knit stash of “Flies in My Appletini” by Fully Spun – just couldn’t resist it!

  • Sylph’s ‘Cream Cheese and Lox’
    had to buy some:)

  • Giant clam closing forever. Blue-gteen. The. Dye for Yarn shop always amuses.

  • Frank Ocre

  • Bunny Bum -and it was as soft and white as it suggests.

  • I have some Mad Tosh yarn called Lampyridae

    • That is too cool ( i’m an aquatic ecologist)!!

  • I had a beautiful skein named Space Cowboy, all shades of blue with speckles of warmer colors, loved it.

  • Plum Island, after the locale for experiments with germ warfare, nice local reference from when I lived on Long Island

    • Hen Pecked. It is a fun and beautiful self stripping sock yarn.

  • Ook 113. ( which I really thought was ook, until I was told that it meant one of a kind by the dyer.)

    • HA – this is the best!

  • Maybe not the most memorable, but the ones that drive me crazy are the numbered colors. Yes, I’ll have three more balls of number 6 please!

  • Electric Poppy. Ok so maybe that was a batch I dyed myself. It was supposed to be a seashell coral but oops! Maybe the yarn manufacturers need to get some guidance from the OPI nail lacquer company: I’m Not Really A Waitress, Lincoln Park After Dark just to name a couple.

    • My OPI fave was I’ve got the Blues for Red! Awesome shade.

    • Or my favorite, Kiss Me On the Two LIps

    • I’m Not Really A Waitress is my all-time favorite red polish. Great color, great name. Would love to see a matching yarn!

  • Orange You Glad

  • Women of a certain age should not wear leggings. Seriously, that was the name!

  • Zombie Honeymoon

  • Years back at a festival I bought a yarn called manure brown. It was lovely, the yarn not the name.

  • (Traffic) Jam (on the 400). Dyed by Palindrome Knits . The 400 is a Hwy in Ontario which I frequently drive. Had to by the yarn

    • Ugh terrible in a good way! Was it road rage red? Morose brown? Late again orange? Ice covered blue? That’s a highway I don’t enjoy and I don’t even have to use it near Toronto!

  • Attack of the Killer Tomatoes Red. I bribed my son to go to the Massachusetts Sheep and Wool Fair with me. We found this lovely sock yarn with bright reds, hints of poison green, browns that I knit into a pair of socks for him; it only took 10 years. He wore through the balls of the feet but the rest of the socks were in great shape so I ripped them out and I now use the wall to do hems of other socks; one of my favorite cuffs.

  • Wow, I indeed live a shelter life and I can’t even blame the pandemic. Surely if I was living my lockdown life to its fullest I would have been shopping for yarn with names other than denim or coral or the occasional “bare”, risqué in a Victorian ankles kind of way. I was reading this in bed this morning because I was too lazy to get up and almost woke my snoring husband and the toddler draped over me with my suppressed giggles. I do have one name to add which is the product of my imagination only…”Stop, That’s Not Mustard” in tribute to new parents and grandparents everywhere.

  • I love the color “Drunken Watermelon” by Miss Babs.
    It has all the drama you’d expect from that name, but without the hangover. (As for the skein of “Avatar”, I haven’t quite decided what to make with it. Probably socks or a shawl. Right now we’re at the stage in our relationship where I admire how gorgeous it is on the skein.)

  • “Zombie Prom” by Miss Babs always makes me laugh.

  • Dirty Harry

  • I love Dye for Wool’s color names. I knit a sweater with Too Hard Butter Cookie.

  • Ghost Ranch. I just love that colorway.

  • Cheating A$$ – I bought it as a tribute to my ex!

  • Starling seemed a weird name for a lavender yarn, since the bird of that name is basically black!

    • It does seem a stretch for a lavender, but there is purple in the iridescence of a starling (in bright sunlight). I have a skein of European Starling from Songbird Yarn and Fibres in Stratford, Ontario. It’s a dark green, black, and dark blue. Just a hint of purple in the blue. I love all her bird-named colours!

  • Swamp. Now who wouldn’t want to wrap themselves up in something that color?

  • “When Presents Explode”

  • Blue

  • Shaken Not Stirred – a blue and green mix by Miss Baba

    • Miss Babs, that is.

  • Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    Bad hair day!
  • Blood Runs Cold

  • I love Saturday Morning Snippets by the way! So looking at sock names sent me deep diving into my stash of sock yarn (I have some in there that I totally forgot about) and came up with Punky Fuschia it immediately reminded me of that old show Punky Brewster probably why I bought it n the first place.

  • Draper’s Blue. Or maybe Suitcase which was a lovely silver gray. Or maybe…

  • Manatee Totaller!

    • These responses are cracking me up! I guess I buy yarn with dull names! I recall a fun speckled Mad Tosh called “Found Pottery”. And I love their “Barbara Deserved Better”. I haven’t figured out who Barbara is…

      • I believe that’s part of the Stranger Things line of color ways. Barb was a very underserved character. I also like Eleven Light and Eleven Dark from the same inspiration.

        • Gosh, maybe all Barbara’s deserve better???

      • Without any evidence, I immediately assumed it was Barbara on Call the Midwife. A saintly character who died after getting sick on her honeymoon. One of my favorite yarn names too.

  • Madelinetosh Asphalt. It reminds me of the Chip and Tar road surfaces of my very rural childhood especially after crashing my bike and seeing blood splatter everywhere.

  • I LOVE BLUE YARN! it’s my favorite!y all time favorite blue is called “azul profundo” (from malabrigo). Being a relatively *green* knitter, I’ve not come across any particularly ridiculous colorway names (see what I did there?)

  • Hey- I made my day tripper cardigan with Frostbite as the MC! I imagined it as the color of zombie flesh. So I have to say Frostbite is one of the weirdest yarn color names I’ve come across so far

    • I had some leftover pale green yarn from a trip to Iceland, and decided to use it as my MC for the Daytripper I am going to make when I found the same color at my LYS (an hour away). I discovered the name is ‘Frostbite’ after checking the colors on MDK,. I love it and can’t wait to start the sweater (still finishing my Destination Scarf with more colors from my Iceland trip stash).

  • Does spinning fiber count here? I say it should. I bought some roving called Camping Barbie because of the name. It’s pink, brown, green. I looked at it for a long time before deciding how to spin it. The name definitely added more fun to the whole process. When I decide what to knit with it I’ll still be thinking about the name.

  • I was gifted a hank of yarn which was hand-dyed by a friend of mine. She had tried to get the color ‘just right’ but it morphed into a blob of greenish-brownish-blackish cotton. Her name for it? Goose turd!

  • Evil Beaver and Bougie Beaver by Magpie Fibers

  • Dumpster Fire 2016. Nothing good became of it.

    • Goose Turd Green. I believe there are references to that color name dating back to the 16th century!

  • Shark Bite. It is blue and white with little bits of blood red thrown in the mix. I know someone who has combined this colorway with Blood Runs Cold for a sweet pair of fingerless (!) mitts. I am quite envious.

    • ‘Fingerless’ mitts….too perfect

  • 2 different yarns called Seattle tonal, one greys and one greens

  • I remember “Zombie Apocalypse.” It was green and black….

    • Although perhaps not a strange name, as someone who has seen several fresh brains, Nua Cerebellum is a fairly accurate name for the color.

  • Roadkill. So red and murky brown

  • Librarian’s Dream!

    And while I realize that it is probably easy for yarn companies to simply assign a number to a color, it is so disappointing to order a skein of “457” (or whatever).

  • I recently purchased a yarn named Flying Elvis. Loved the name!

  • Haute Knit Yarn’s Holy Crap on a Cracker! Love the name and the color! A runner-up is Put An Umbrella in My Drink from the same dyer.

  • Good grief, Prison Cafeteria. I giggled over that one, then thought of the sage green bedroom (my favorite color). Yup.

  • I friend of mine was spinning some roving that looked like a clown wig and the group promptly named it Clown barf. My favorite socks are from a color way named Neon Rainbow. I also picked up a skein of Kentucky Fall on a yarn hop that is a lovely rust, orange, and yellow blend that reminds me of fall leaves every time I wear the shawl.

  • Countess Ablaze has the best names: sometimes dead is better.

  • Not a yarn colour but a paint colour story. NIne years ago we had a massive extension built on our house with an open plan kitchen, dining room and sitting area extending into two staircases, one at each end of the house, to two separate first floor landings. The joins were seamless so we decided to paint it all one light and bright neutral colour. I chose what I thought would be a pale creamy off white called ‘Almond Blossom’.

    The decorator arrived with about 15 large tins of paint that he’d had mixed specially and started work. I was out at the time but arrived back to find a pink wall – PINK!!!! In electric light the colour was not too bad and certainly not pink – but in daylight it was most definitely a pale pink.

    The moral of this tale is never choose your paint or yarn colours by electric light. I had to live with that colour for 7 years until we had the whole area repainted in 2019. It is now the intended colour which is called Natural Calico.

    • What a great way to start my Sunday reading these snippets. I don’t usually pay any attention to the names but I was looking at someone’s yarns the other day and it was a beautiful cheap bloody shade of red with white called Dexter. While it isn’t blue I think I’m going to have to buy some.

  • Postcard… Ciao!

  • “Navy pea coat” by Tammy at Wingandaprayer farm. It is a gorgeous navy blue and somehow the name described it aptly. Lot of depth and reminded me of historic Russian-style double breasted duffel coat.

  • Honestly, Kaffe’s Treacle that I bought from MDK headquarters seems pretty nutty to me. I am using it. I have seen actual treacle, the goopy stuff. I consider it a lovely brown – both the goopy stuff and the yarn – but I read an “official description” that describes it as purple. This means I am knitting a purple colorwork elk in my stranded throw. The name itself is not nearly as funny as some of the one’s below (I want to go out for cocktails with the reader who came up with, “Stop, that’s not mustard” for new parents but the idea of a purple elk makes me chuckle…

    • I LOVE the Treacle and have used it for Kaffe hats as well as in the Garter Striped Shawl. I think of it as brown, too, though I love the undertones of other colors, which I guess could be purple-ish… I had to get it after reading Ann’s post about her border on the Kaffe blanket, I think.

  • One of my favorite color names is Hummingbird by Brew City. It’s not real put there, but hummers and brews are two of my husband’s favorites, so it made the perfect set of fingerless gloves for the office.

  • The first skein of yarn I ever bought was When Pigs Fly – a lovely bright pink.

  • Faerie’s Panties.
    Someone got close enough to document this?

  • Toxic waste

    • Care bear stare from an out-of-business dyer. I also have a few from her with NSFW names

  • The colour names from Miss Babs are always a hoot. Bat Shit Crazy comes to mind.

  • I love dark colours so I was in love with “Bat in a Dark Mood” from Dye for yarn.

    • I love dark colors, too! I’m in love with Harrisville nightshades, which all have great names. My favorite is a black marbled with dark red called Fever Dreams.

  • I often purchase yarn just for the colour name, most recently my current sock project colour is Stella the Two Face Cat.

    • “ People Are Particularly Stupid Today; I Cannot Speak To Any More Of Them,” by Indigodragonfly is one of my all-time faves, and apt even if you don’t get the Gilmore Girls reference.

      • Ha, I was waiting for someone to mention Kim at Indigodragonfly. My favorite from her was I saved Latin a Rushmore allusion.

  • Bahama woodstar mrs Crosby yarn

  • I once pondered purchasing a hank called, NAKED MUSHROOM. As usual, I ended up buying something in the big world of blue instead.

  • Sock blank from Hidden Door Fibers called “Dumpster Fire 2020.” I made the socks in hopes it would unravel the bad karma from 2020!

  • It’s not a color, but ‘Strut Bitch Strut’ immediately springs to mind. I can’t recall the dyer’s name, but her color names run along the same vein. I also have to say that reading these comments really gave me the giggles!

  • AT Haynes has great yarn names. How about: I Just Need a Hug

  • Not nearly as weird as some but really pretty. Very berry by Emma’s Yarn Crazy beautiful colors.

  • Unicorn poop by an indy dyer I saw on Etsy. A saturated pastel rainbow!

  • Goose turd green by plimoth plantation

  • Nevuary and Mississippi Marsala by Spincycle

    • So many great names! The two Rowan names, Pickle and Giggle are nothing compared to Unicorn Fart! Unicorn Poop! So many unicorns…

  • Chocolate. Nuff said!

  • Anything by Countess Ablaze. Her yarns are wildly named and dyed, unique and beautiful!

    • Beautiful yarns and great names!

  • I love the SpinCycle Yarns creative names! My favorite is Ghost Ranch.

    • Cinnamon Roll Left Too Long in the Oven. And it is a perfect description of the color. I can almost smell the overcooked cinnamon. I don’t know the brand, but I have always remembered the name of the color. Also, these creative names for the yarns actually make me want to name projects using the yarn name in some humorous way.

  • A yarn I bought for its color name alone is Good Juju, Emma’s Simply Spectacular DK. I have a granddaughter named Julia who we often call Juju and she is not just a good Juju, she is the best Juju. I test knit Casapinka’s Speckles with it and it is now one of my favorite sweaters.

  • ‘Sacrilegious and Exclusionary’ by Mothy and the Squid, a quite outspoken indie dyer who said the name came from email complaints from people who didn’t like her feminist, anti-racism attitude. It is gorgeous and I look forward to my socks

  • “Bruised Ego” -!

  • And speaking of Blues, my favorite name has always been Knitted Wit’s Buckle My Shoe.

  • I dye yarn for my own use a couple times a year. I recently dyed some for a sweater in grey, black and fuchsia (sounds like it wouldn’t look good, but it totally does!). I’ve named it Goth Hello Kitty.

    • Love this!

  • Underwater Sea.

  • Knitted Wit Victory Sock – Swamp Maid — which is generally my feeling on the back deck after a nice squirrel chase by my dogs soon after a Kentucky deluge rain storm. If I ever start spinning or dying my own — I’m thinking Curse You Clay may be an option.

  • Girl Gone Mad by Murky Depths Harbour is definitely one of the most unusual names in my stash. Greatpurple color!

  • Cuban Cockroach in Bugga. I reeeaaallly don’t care for insects, cockroaches in particular, but that colorway is the most gorgeous green. I tried not to think about the name while knitting with it. 😉

    • Jolly Green Giant

  • Does this Rainbow Make My Black Look Big? great self-striping rainbow and black sock yarn from White Birch Fiber Arts.

  • Unicorn Fart!

  • There are many but the one that’s sticking out to me is “Shut the fucupcakes” from Knitted Wit, an exclusive colorway that was dyed to match the store owner’s hair at the time (black, green, bright pink, and orange). KW has a lot of funny ones.

    • Lorajean does come up with The Best names!!

  • Goose Turd Green – the most popular color of New Plimoth Worsted yarn produced by Harrisville Designs; used to make period clothing for the interpreters at Plimoth Patuxet Museum, Plymouth. Massachusetts.

  • Wish You Were Beer by Emma’s Yarn

  • There are some great ones in the comments I will admit to almost always succumbing to the name. Sea Turtle delights me every time I see it in my stash. Offhand I can’t remember any of my funny ones. I would love having the job of naming the colors!

  • I picked up a skein from Cedar Creek Farms at a fiber festival called Herd of Turtles. It is a neon green variegated that I absolutely love!

  • My favorite color name is Treacle. I have some Rowan Hemp Tweed in Treacle and it is positively yummy to knit with.

  • Party in a can! It’s a great multi colored mix from Hand Dyed Diva that keeps surprising you with little happy pops of color. Who wouldn’t want to knit with something like that!

  • I love all of Spincycle’s yarn names, but favorite is Deep Bump!

  • Fading Whiskey Hangover – the color was a yellow green that aptly fit the name!

  • Poisoning the Ex !

  • Having been a teenager in the 60’s, I like Woodstock.

  • Master of Disaster- Hue Loco hope that isn’t an omen

  • Jonas’s Rainbow… my friend’s 4 year old helped her dye yarn, loved it, and the result was wonderful! I used it to knit a marled sweater (City Limits) for my 9 year old granddaughter’s birthday

  • Eowyn’s Mantle by Purple Lamb Fibers is very memorable and sorry, mostly blue…

  • Rain in a graveyard.

  • My son being a Walking Dead fan wanted a pair of socks. I found an awesome colorway from Lorna’s Laces called Zombie BBQ. Perfect name perfect colors!

  • Bougie Beaver!!!

  • EEL
    Shades of blue and green. I love it but haven’t quite figured out what to make with it

  • My favorite is Crumbling Brick Ruin, a silk/cashmere blend that would be a salmon pink if creativity were not involved in the naming process.

    I once saw a pin on Pinterest that asked “If you were a yarn, what would your name be?” There are 3 columns, one for your first name, one for your last name and a 3rd for your birth month which designates the type of yarn. Mine was “Lovely Rumble” cotton.

  • The name ‘Crush” for a white yarn. I could never remember that color name when I wanted to order it.
    To label yarns with numbers instead of thinking of catchy names for them is the “cowards” way out! ;0)
    Another enjoyable and very appreciated Sunday morning read!
    Thank you MDK team!

  • I just got a skein of Jessica’s Rabbits Bunana yarn. It’s spun with recycled banana tree fiber and her Angora rabbits! Her colorways are Bunrise, Bunset, and Buns Who Brunch;)

    • Another color from Jessica’s Rabbits is Velveeta Loves Fauci (Velveeta is the bun’s name)! And I have a skein from her beautiful, pure white bunny named Heidi Klum

  • My favorite color name was Jamie’s Kilt – referring to Jamie Fraser of Outlander book/tv series. The character is quite hunky and handsome! Who wouldn’t want to be wrapped up in Jamie’s Kilt!!

  • Definitely: Pond Scum

  • There are sure a lot of poop-based names here (interesting!) in our Dairy-farming family, there was one color we could never use, not for paint, not for fabric or yarn, not even for polka dots, because dad would take one look at it, shake his head, and declare it to be Calf Crap Yellow.

    Actual yarn colors though, I’ll confess to being squeamish about using Poison Green, simply because of the name. Now you’ve got me curious how many yarns I pass up just because the color name makes me shiver.

    • We always called it Calf-Scours, or Sh!t-Brindle .

      • Calf scours is the name for that thing on the farm I grew up on. That I could not use either.

  • I’ve enjoyed the comments too. I’m in the middle of a Stranded Color Throw – Kaffe Fassett’s treacle is an unusual name – the internet tells me it’s molasses-like.

  • Knitted Wit comes up with great names…one of my favorites..
    Time Flies Like an Arrow Fruit Flies Like a Banana

  • I am currently knitting socks with yarn called “Rock Out With Your (Pea) Cock Out by Fiber Addiction. I was gifted this yarn and have been waiting to make these for just the right sock-worthy recipient…my sister-in-law!

  • This is not a yarn color, but interestingly the interior of our house is painted with “warm wool” which is a lovely, cozy off-white. How could I resist that name?

  • Moody Pumpkin!

  • I lol when I saw a yarn color named Beige that was anything but—it was a riot of bright colors. Still cracks me up.

  • Bougie beaver from magpie and all the beaver colors crack me up

  • How about Peppa Pig?

  • Molly Girl Yarn’s Boogie Woogie in Itsy Bitsy Teeny-Weeny Yellow Polka-Dot Bikini – still haven’t found a pattern after three different tries

  • Miss Babs has a color called Batshit Crazy

  • It’s not for me.

  • Coconut Horses (a Monty Python reference)

  • Panic in Detroit— which is gorgeous but I’m not sure I would have guessed the color from the name.

  • I have used a yarn named Bougie Beaver. Strange name but beautiful color.

  • I love yarn names! My favorite was the most vibrant, wild multi that I just had to have on sight, by Hedgehog Fibres — called Guppy. My daughter’s was a cowl I made her from Zombie Entrails (she is a Walking Dead fan).

  • Another green color – “I know what happened to the olive”

  • A black, purple and green hand-dyed skein called “Graped Crusader”!

  • The most memorable color names are by Whimsical Wood Yarn Co because they are hilarious! So many of her colorways have the word “ass” in them. Galactic Ass, Subtle Ass, Romantic Ass, Luxurious Ass, Bougie Ass, Love the Ass You’re With, Cute Ass Nurses, Random Ass of Kindness, 2020 Can Kiss My Ass! I could go on, but you get the idea!! Lol!

  • I have a Schaefer yarn named Judy Jetson. Lol

  • “It smells like snow” — Nomadic Yarns

  • I enjoyed reading the inaugural letter to your new feature. It brightened my day after reading nothing but depressing Covid news.

    The most delightful name for wool that I picked up was called Summer Washed Denim. Not so odd a name but it was memorable to me, a person who never remembers anything, mostly because the yarn has the most wonderful colour and shading. It is a hand dyed sock weight merino and I made a lovely shawl (Reyna) with it.

  • Pond Scum (Blur Moon Fiber Arts)
    and Goose Turd (specially made for Plimouth Plantation) are my favorites.

  • Your Face

  • Oh I so get this! Luckily we like our bedroom walls painted “Reclining Green”.

    • Oops posted before listing my yarn: “I knew who I was this morning” from “A Whimsical Wood Yarn Co.”

  • F*ck cancer!

  • Relish

  • I have definitely knit projects with crazily named yarns, but one of my most memorable was Jamie’s Kilt, a mini-skein set by Lorna’s Laces. Every single person in my knitting group loves Outlander and, yes, every single person in my knitting group just had to purchase the set not because of the colors but because of the name.

    The memorable part was when we got together (remember getting together?) with our respective projects, they were all so different you would never have guessed they were from the same yarn. While we were all wrapped in Jamie’s kilt—just as readers develop their own unique visions of a character—we each imagined Jamie in our own unique way.

  • Truthbomb! Spincycle Yarns! Truth be told, I’m more of a Lapis fan!

  • I recently bought a skein of intriguing blended colors of green from the KFI luxury collection (which is so unlike me… called Bamboo Canoe. It is taking me on a journey, all right. Simple triangle shawl is taking FOREVER.

  • Scorn of Plenty, LOL! Thanks for the laughs today. I needed it! Love the Blue paint chip too.

  • I’ve enjoyed Dirty Hippie and Party At A Rich Girl’s House.

  • Love the deserved confidence of “The Best Blue in the World”!

  • Kitchen Sink by Premier Yarns

  • It’s all about blue…..The Green Button Jar has a beautiful hand dyed colour called Gunslinger. Just a gorgeous darker blue. No such thing as a bad blue!

  • Tucson. Why is this city represented by this colorway?

  • 716knits “20% cooler”

  • Not an actual name as far as I know, but when I worked in a yarn shop, we noticed that a certain company had a color we nicknamed “Granny Panty Pink” in every weight and fiber of yarn they sold.

  • Bad candy corn.

  • Two of my favourites are “Wormwood” and “Old Books” from Steph at Grenouille Co. Who could resist beautiful hand dyed yarn with names like that?

  • Martha’s Vineyard is a yarn l’ve got in my stash. A vacation there would be nice right now!

  • I was going to knit a gift for a friend and she wanted something in green and I noticed that I don’t have any green yarns ! Blues and purples and grey. I had to purchase and look at the beautiful greens

  • Goose turd, of course.

  • Even though it’s not a yarn color (but instead a drone ship to land the space booster rocket thing), it’s Of Course I Still Love You. I wish someone would honor our astronauts and the crews who create and work on reusable parts and name a line of yarn after them!

    • UFO by Hedgehog Fibers

  • Carol Feller’s colorways have fun names.
    I recently used Rowan Tweed “Tawny” and could not figure out how they cane up with that name for a burgundy-esque color yarn. Tawny is the color of a lion! I actually googled “tawny” and saw an entry for tawny port. Of course!

  • Pond scum from Blue Moon/Socks that Rock. I ordered it immediately!

  • Rowan Felted Tweed Vaseline Green. Describes the color perfectly but because of the feeling of Vaseline, not a name I would ever pick for yarn. Perfectly memorable.

  • Ectoplasm, and also unicorn barf – both very accurately descriptive!

  • My most memorable are the skeins of Malibrigo in the color Minnehaha from the Land of Sky Blue Waters, sold by The Yarnery in St. Paul. Such pretty blues.

  • Deep Dyed Yarns always has great names, and one of my favorites was Stoned Toad.

  • String Theory Colorworks yarn “Resistor” (stripes of gray and green, yellow, red and black), used to make socks for my son-in-law who had a physics degree. He was very pleased and promptly calculated the total electrical resistance represented!

  • Frog and Toad are Friends (Earl Grey Fiber Company)

  • Saw a yarn posted on FB a little while ago named “Goose Poop” can’t remember mfgr. It did, really, really, look like goose poop. (dark green, inherent slimy tone)

  • Goose Turd Green

  • As a nurse…botulism was the most disturbing for me!

  • One yarn line used (AF) at the end of several of their color names.

  • Potimarron, always makes me smile.

  • I’m smitten with “Dirty Harry.”

  • Whales under water

    • UFO by Hedgehog

  • I’m always a little put off by Hedgehog Sock color “swamp”. Can’t help but imagine damp feet in those socks….in fact Hedgehog also has a color called “damp”!

    • At least it’s not Moist!

  • I have both a car and a shawl called Sea Foam – quite different colors, though.

  • I have a hank of Dream in Color Smooshy with cashmere in “Awesome! Wow!” A colorway that makes me break into “You’ll Be Back” from Hamilton.

  • Zombie Apocalypse…Stages 1, 2, and 3. each stage gets a little more intense.

  • “Abalone”, which became an endless fascinating throw.

  • I definitely believe that the Rowan Grief colorway exists or did exist, and my favorite gray in the world is Rowan Big Wool in Glum. It’s the perfect gray. A just-right gray. I feel smug every time I knit with it, just knowing how happy Glum is going to make me feel. Not glum at all. (DG, I can really relate to the logo graphic design woes (but the house/dragon/daughter request takes the cake.)

    • I also have sock yarn called Use Your Illusion I and II, using the colors from the covers of the Guns N Roses albums.

  • I must be shopping in the wrong places! Or else not noticing yarn names . The oddest one I can remember is Experimental Love Child by Verdant Gryphon. Those unicorn ones sound fascinating…I think my granddaughters would love them!

  • Barbara Deserves Better. Seriously!

  • Goose Turd Green

  • “Muppets in the Blender” from a local dyer, yarn crawl, years ago, purchased at JPKnit and Stitch. Bought the yarn on Friday, made a cowl Friday night and wore it crawling on Saturday.

  • A Whimsical Wood Yarn Co.’s Jack Ass!

  • Granny Panties!

  • Monkey barf green…..don’t remember the yarn company but I think they wanted it that way.

  • This one just made me laugh, FREE RANGE CHICKENS. I’m a “visual person” and the whole time I was knitting with this yarn I kept visualizing these chickens wearing the scarf I was knitting, out on the “range” roaming around. I kept having to remember not to chuckle randomly while knitting when I was around others.

  • Hue Loco’s “That’s What She Said”.

  • Scotchbroom. I have helped clear fields of it, as it is very invasive. But it does have charming yellow flowers.

  • puke green is the affectionate name. It’s a light green with a bit of red mixed in to give it the color resembling the name.

  • Stop! (It’s red :D).

  • Unicorn barf!

  • Chinook. I can’t even remember what the color actually was. Just struck me as an odd name since it’s a warm wind (one meaning).

    • I have a skein of sock yarn in this color – reminds me of fishing in Alaska! One of my favorite blue-greens…

    • Also the largest species of salmon- silvery sides and blue-green, red, pink or yellowy on top with black spots. Would be a pretty cool yarn color.

  • Herding Cats- it is an expression my husband has used since our adult son was a baby. A friend saw the name and felt I had to have it!

  • Goose-turd green by Harrisville for Plimoth Plantation. It’s a little too specific for me. Did they make someone do the color matching for accuracy?

  • Cattywampus! With which I knit the Cubist Socks and felt Picasso would have approved

  • I like Ghost. And Rain in a Graveyard .

  • Rowan FT Vaseline Green is weird enough. Still waiting for someone to label “babysh*t yellow.”

  • Kiwi from Brown Sheep

  • A sweater knit from ‘Grief’ would have to be Victorian, right?

  • Just bought some Juniper Moon Farm Cumulus yesterday- “Goldfish Sparked”. Weird name- but pretty peach color!

  • “Drama queen” Thanks guys- love your daily musings:-)

  • My most unusual colour name is “lint.” I named it myself after an unsuccessful overdye for a shawl project.

  • Zombie Prom! Crazy name to be sure!!

  • Orange ya glad to have seen me, or something close…

  • My sister & I play “Guess the Color Name” game when we shop yarns together. This can lead to deep philosophical discussions on the nature of the human experience. You Give Love a Brand Name -was the colorway name that grabbed my imagination.

  • The one that has always confused me is WINEGUM for Fyberspates Scrumptious Lace Yarn in a dark really blue.

    • Ooo, I have that yarn – it’s lovely! My skeins is a very dark teal, murky & mysterious. I think it was a color chosen by Ysolda for Fyberspates but don’t know if she named it.

  • Oopsie

    • the Beaver series of colors by Magpie Fibers. Gorgeous colors, and the names all make me snicker.

  • To tell you the truth I do ot look at the ames, just the colors!

  • Dirt….and it did look like dirt!

  • The Family Jewels

  • Plimoth Plantation’s GOOSE TURD GREEN

  • goose turd green

  • Zombie Prom!

  • That’s easy! It’s a three way tie between Kitten Fluff, Angry Monkey, and Bare Necessities. Memorable all the way!

  • Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    “Bah Humbug” – a festive Christmas self-striping sock yarn, by Turtlepurl, alternating red and green with lots of black.
  • War Widow

  • Sexy mf from Three Irish Girls.

  • Wash with snow by. Gamer crafting it greyish color

  • Rainbow Trout – a self-striping yarn, and yes, it is all the colors of a rainbow trout, in the correct order from backbone to belly.

    • Who makes that – I’m an avid fish flyer so that NEEDS to be included in my stash! And do they have a Brown Trout to make a perfect pair?

      • * fly fisher

  • I love All Night Diner by Tweedle De Dum—back with neon splashes.

  • Purple plunge – what exactly were they thinking??

  • Fave name of yarn I’ve bought is “Sun’s out, guns out” by Leo and Roxy. The color way is pretty fantastic too.

  • Grotto Blue

  • I bought some yarn this week named The Parasol. It’s neon yellow. Why?

  • “Smokey Eyes and Coloured Lips,” a beautiful sock yarn from Opal.

  • Preexisting condition. I bought a skein in solidarity.

  • I always thought that Gauge Dye Works’ (used to be Caterpillargreen) colorway “Concrete and Tulips” was so evocative.

    • My favorite is ‘Horse With No Name’ by Into the Whirled. The whole time I was knitting with it I had that song by “America” stuck in my head. “ I’ve been to the desert with a horse with no name… it felt good to get out of the rain. In the desert you can remember your name, cuz there ain’t no one for to give you no pain”.

      • Now I’ve got an earworm. 🙂

  • Kirbywirby’s yarn “Frozen Farmer’s Hiney

  • I found a color called “Blue Brick Wall” which is actually blue, lavender, teal and multiple shades of ochre …it’s breathtaking and my favorite piece!

  • “Don’t Step on the Strawberries” – by an Indy dyer … can’t remember her name. Yarn had bright red spots amongst sand & rock colors.

  • Broken Robot Girl (Dye for Yarn);haven’t knit with it yet but the name compels me too!

  • Heirloom Vegetable!

  • Ziggy stardust…because my dog is named Ziggy

  • Knit Circus has wildly creative and fun names for their yarns. ‘Abandon Ship’ is in my stash.

  • Attending a trunk show years ago I had to buy “Pop Pop Fizz Fizz”. The name conjured up so many memories of my childhood. It still makes me laugh reminding me of the TV jingle I heard so many times growing up. I still remember, like it was yesterday, watching my dad drop the white Alka Seltzer tablet in the glass, enamored to see it make the fizz. Like the jungle ”…oh what a relief it is!” so is the yarn.

  • Acid Reflex!

  • 1. Barbara Deserved Better
    2. Voodoo Queen

  • That which will never be matched.

  • I love all the names. The weirdest, to me, was the yarn shop owner who changed the names to numbers so customers could not easily shop with her and then buy on line. This was unpleasant for me because I had shopped on line and was there to buy.

  • I went back to look at colors I’d knitted with. Most not nearly as interesting as those already in the comments. But the Felted Tweed names from an afghan I knit for my son “Midnight, Gilt, Rage, Avocado, Ginger, Cocoa, Melody, Sigh, Treacle, Whisper, and outlined in Carbon.”

    Melody, Sigh, and Whisper? Go find those colors without a chart!

  • Completely Bonkers – One of the Plucky names that could be any color!

  • Cinnamon roll too long in the oven.

  • Passing over all indie dyers’ oddball color names as being too-easy targets, the first shade from an “established yarn company” that sent me a-Googling was “Petrol.” Who knew that dark grey/blue was supposed to win me over by being named for crude oil?

  • Goose Turd Green!

  • The colorway name I’ll never forget is Lorna’s Laces’ Zombie BBQ, a multi with green and red and lots of other colors.

  • Unicorn vomit — but I didn’t buy it! 🙂

  • Pond Scum by Dirty Water Dyeworks

  • I have some lovely Fibre Company Lore in the colors Logical and Stable — names that really elevate white and beige. Beautiful yarn!

  • Zombies vomit

  • Bubble gum…yarn in this colour (pink with multi-colour flecks) was given to me by my son on Mother’s Day 2019…the skein became my favourite pair of socks!

  • A new yarn I have added for a sweater project is “cerebellum”, NUA sport by Carol Feller

  • Happy for the Chalice cowl!! The color was!!

  • Naughty Santa

  • Fierce Blue!

  • Strawberry Margarita!

  • “Beige” for a multi color yarn that was anything but!

  • Dive Bar by Spun Right Round…kind of a “dirty” neutral.

  • As God is My Witness, I Thought Turkeys Could Fly yarn

  • Stormy seas. Was truly a rough ride yarn.

  • Rowan should have its own posting for Very Odd Color Names! There are at least three categories: (1) that’s a color but it sure isn’t related to the yarn color here! (for example Cement, which is a dark steel grey, or Pickles, a sickly ochre. (2) that is a random word unrelated to color and therefore it’s totally unhelpful. (for example Tickle, Giggle, Jellyfish (ruby red!), Cove (light cream), Hush, Nook, Prize, Regalia (tan).) And finally (3) why on earth would you name anything that! (for example Drab – fairly accurate but hardly enticing! – and Pompous (dark cool brown).)
    At least Aged (a lovely saturated teal) has it all over Jeune (a light mustardy ochre)!
    P.S. An idea for random striping: make a list of unhelpful Rowan color names, write a paragraph where all the adjectives and nouns are those names (“we had to Tiptoe out because it was Naptime and Mariana needed to have a little Cuddle with her Precious Dolly “) and then knit the stripes in that order.

    • Love your idea

  • Goose turd by plimouth yarn

  • The Masque Slipped & My Crazy Peered Out by Despondent Dyes. Thought the name was very fitting right now..

  • Hank Snowplow (a murky dark purplish green from Indigo Dragonfly and yes of course I bought it)

  • Color# 6669

  • Blue Moon Fiber Arts has some great yarn names, including Pond Scum (which several people have mentioned) and my personal favorite, Primordial Ooze.

  • Despondent Dyes has the most clever names. I love ” she wears Max Factor, l wear Chapstick.

  • This Pussy Grabs Back!

  • Shirley Brian yarns has some wonderful name for her magical deconstructed fade yarns:

    That’s a terrible idea…what time?
    You’re so vain you probably think these socks are for you

    And the list goes on

  • Vapor Gray

  • [email protected]

  • Plummeting upwards from LolaBean Yarn Co!

  • Court & Spark. I’m guessing Amish sexy??

  • Stinky Pink.

  • Goose-turd green in Plimoth Worsted from Plimoth Plantation

  • “Zombie Apocalypse.

  • Pond Scum

  • Barnyard

  • FREIA YARNS “VAMP” –Which is also the name of Chanel’s most famous nail polish, a deep dark red first seen in the 1920’s.

  • Goose Turd Green

  • Travel Agent for Guilt Trips

  • Zombie Prom: my handspun from the gorgeous roving of that name by Miss Babs. It is so unusual!

  • I have a delicious MadTosh yarn called A Clue Board from 1984, and it makes me so happy to think about. 🙂 (I started a shawl with it, but the pattern & the yarn didn’t play well together, so I’m re-calibrating.)

  • I have a shawlette knit in “Ectoplasm.” I have that shawlette chiefly *because* the color was called “Ectoplasm.”

  • Medium brown. That was helpful, NOT,

  • Mud. The yarn was beautiful, but not the name.

  • Molly Weasley. Truly was a colorful stripe yarn. And I dressed up as Molly Weasley for Halloween that year.

  • Lurch by ____ . It made the most luscious cowl.

  • I ordered some Jill Draper Makes Stuff in Bad Penny. When the yarn came it was labeled Good Penny. I never know what to say when people ask the color of my sweater.

  • Lavender Lune has a colorway called “Rad as F@#A%” – the colors (fuchsia with dark green) is definitely Rad!

  • Any yarns from Indigo Dragonfly. One of my favorites is Grouching Oscar, Hidden Snuffy!

  • My favorite blue that I actually have used (because of the beautiful color, not the name) is Nymeria from Dragonfly Fibers. There are so many clever punny names out there it’s hard to choose from, but I did enjoy Deja Blue from the Plucky Knitter.

  • Who Drank the Tequila?

  • Apocalyptic Zombie

  • I wish I had a color story vis a vis yarn…

  • Blue Moon Fiber Arts has so many great names. Greige is lovely and the name captures it.

  • Envy, as if…

  • Botticelli red! I found a skein of this Malabrigo sock yarn in my way back stash. Who wouldn’t want to use this for all sorts of knit creations? Maybe you can convince others to create Botticelli reds. We need more!

    Which reminds me when my then elementary school son accompanied me (unwillingly) to the makeup counter and got enthralled by the color names. Is there an Estée Lauder employee in charge of naming?

  • Your Socks.

  • Smaug’s Gold

  • Without a doubt – Goose Turd Green

  • When I first started knitting I got some “Ashes of Roses” . I thought it was a depressing name but the LYS owner thought it was a beautiful name. It was subdued pink. I still don’t like the name.

  • A yarn shop i visited years ago had sock yarn color ways named for each Dr. Who by number. I chose the one associated with David Tennant. Unfortunately, after starting to knit with it, I realized I couldn’t live with it unlike Nomad’s Trail and took all 3 skeins to the local Goodwill

  • Don’t Eat the Gorse

  • Plied Yarns has a chartreuse yarn called Sauerkraut on Thanksgiving!

  • Peanut Head Bug by the Verdant Gryphon

  • Goose turd green!

  • Valkyrie by Blue Moon Fiber Arts, a gorgeous, shifting purple.

  • Sherlock’s purple shirt of Sex, by Mint Rain Yarns. I had to buy it and I didn’t know the connection to the Sherlock show on t.v. because I haven’t seen t.v. in several years but the name got me.

  • It has been ages since I bought yarn just because but the PDX yarn crawl released a special line this year named after the March girls in Little Women. I may have blown my yarn crawl budget as that was my favorite book as a child….

  • Hipster Scum!

  • Favorite yarn color: “Pond Scum”!

  • Bishop’s Finger Which was actually an ethereal wheat color.

  • Tosh light Stonepipe. It’s a beautiful blue. But what’s a stonepipe? I never saw a stone or a pipe that was blue.

    • Yet there is a national park in MN called pipestone. The stone itself is reddish though. The stone was used the by the Native Americans for pipes!

  • There used to be a shiny yarn called “brillo” which means shine in Spanish but has a different connotation in Enlgish.

  • A blue-green named Pond Scum.

  • Beige by Indigo Dragonfly – definitely not beige, and includes blue.

  • I have one in my stash from Indigodragonfly called Hallowe’en: Giving Blue Jays Fans Something To Do in October since 1994. It’s blue. And obviously been in my stash for quite a while seeing as the Jays played October baseball in 2015 (and ’16 and ’20).

  • Swamp Zombie from Bad Amy Knits!

  • Stuffing – Nature’s Cruel Joke on Bread

  • Sunburnt Lobster

    • Day at the Fair, Which I will always remember because this name belonged to a spectacular hank of hand-dyed which leapt into my hand during my first visit to Maryland Sheep and Wool, about 10 years ago. While that lovely explosion of color and yarn happiness has been gracing a loved one’s head for a long time now, I will never forget it!!

  • “Peace and Love”…a groovy variegated tribute to the 60’s. It was a cotton yarn by one of the big yarn companies (can’t remember which one) and we used it for some really fun, nostalgic dish cloths.

  • Margaritas@4 is a great green.

  • I can’t think of any yarn names, but I once bought a bottle of Sexual Chocolate wine. That would make a good yarn name.

  • If it’s not Scottish, it’s crap.

  • Dirty Mermaid

  • Zombie Yarns “Corpse” in colorway “Slimy Good”.
    It’s actually lime green, IMHO.

  • I’ve always liked Cheeky Rhino, by Hueloco. She has lots of good ones, but that one makes me smile.

  • I Never Promised You a Rose Garden

  • I like KnitPicks’s sock yard called Koi Pond because it has just bits of bright orange amid a sea of blues and greens – what a clever name! I hope it looks like a koi pond when I get it knit up.

  • Bloodshot, Harrisville Designs

  • Have to say. Received my recent order yesterday, and LOVE Tidbits. While choosing my colors( a range of blues and violet to pair with ash in lopi ) a few nights earlier, I kept returning to frostbite. I kept thinking it should be just the right color I wanted but alas no…. Gangene is much more like it…..

  • New to knitting so I have been so absorbed in learning stitches and techniques I haven’t paid much attention to the names of yarn colors. Guess I’ll have to start paying more attention.

  • Spin cycle yarns has Stay out of the forest. It’s a beautiful color way.

  • I enjoy the punny names created by Indigodragonfly such as ‘James Pond in A View To A Krill’ and ‘Already Frogged’ but especially love that ‘Beige’ most definitely isn’t.

  • “Tuna Dreams”. Hand spun cat hair yarn I won at a yarn festival. Not really the prize I was hoping for.

  • oddly enough I have a ball of yarn labelled Blue! And as you have just pointed out there is blue and then there is blue. Which one is it??

  • I have a skein of Black Trillium fingering named “Decay”; actually pretty, in an oil slick kind of way.

  • Salty Dog by Spincycle Yarns Dyed in the Wool. I’m not crazy about the color, but Salty Dog was the name of my favorite little chihuahua, so I had to get it.

  • Teal. It’s very bluish green like a tall spruce tree with a hint of green in some yarns and really green with a yellow undertone from other companies. And then there is the color jade which ranges from a tinted white to a deep dark forest green. Now that jade is exhausted, what color is red?

  • Goose Turd yarn by Plymouth Plantation. I don’t know why they discontinued that!

  • Bold Mold by Knitted Wit. Acid green, browns, ochre, yellows, dark and medium greens. What’s in your refrigerator when you need to clean it.

  • I see a few other knitters agree with me: Pond Scum!

  • Murder in Ravenwood

  • Mermaid Shoes (Dream in Color) is fun to contemplate; a person or persons (who shall remain unnamed) can literally go crazy for Stonehedge Fiber Mill’s Crazy. It’s mill ends put together in wonderfully surprising combinations: no two skeins the same but all wonderfully full of wonders as you knit.

  • Photos, where are the photos?!?!

  • “As God as my witness, I thought turkeys could fly” but really any colour name from Indigodragonfly yarn

  • Dalton Day. I visited a local yarn store in Oregon and told them I wanted to make a scarf for my nephew. They had just finished dying a batch and let me name the color in his honor. I made a Game of Thrones scarf with the house Stark motif.

  • Jamie’s Kilt from Shepherd Sock. My most favorite name! ~Outlander Fan

  • Definitely “goose poop.” My friend and I had a detailed discussion on if the color was accurately named. It was a sort of olivey green that I quite like

  • Barbie’s Dream (or was it Nightmare??)

  • I’m sure somewhere I’ve come across a beige-y brown color called “Rat.” And if I’m making this up, then there should be such a color.

  • Cattapillers Have Four Thousand Muscles- ountess Ablaze

  • “Cumberbacchanal” by Indigo Dragonfly. It’s gray 🙂

  • A StevenBe yarn, by Three Irish Girls: If I Were Kidding, I Would’ve Said You’re Witty & Handsome

  • I’ve always wondered how Zauberball got it’s name 🙂

  • My local dyer (Smith and Ewe) has a skein called Melted Crayon that describes it well. She also has a Neon Nights that is excellently descriptive and I used in a winged shawl

  • Scarlet Oscara a bright pink and white and black self striping sock yarn from Stitch Together Studio

  • has the Princess Bride series; Mawwiage, Rodents of Unusual Size, As You Wish, Have Fun Storming the Castle, I’m Not Really Left Handed, Guilder
    All gorgeous colors!

  • Indigodragonfly yarns have some of the best names… my current favorite – people are particularly stupid today; I cannot speak to any more of them. It’s a gorgeous purple-bluey-grey.

  • “Jungle cloud” Which is basically gray. I’m not sue what jungle has to do with it.

  • To Not Have Alexa Listening to My Every Word by Countess Ablaze

  • Unicorn Poop!

  • KnitPick has a yarn color name Fairy Tale. What color is a fairy tale? Doesn’t it depend on which fairy tale?

  • Diptera (fly) by LolaBean Yarn Co.

  • Pondscum I think by Sock that Rock.

  • “Tomato soup with too much cream” and “Poisoned blood” come to mind! (Both from DyeForYarn on Etsy!)

  • whats the colour

  • Pouring Tequila on an Old Flame! Despondent Dyes has the best yarn names 🙂

  • It was Clown Barf ( its real name was confetti, but it was forever known as Clown Barf.I wish
    That I still had some; it was just totally ALL of the wrong colors in a worse sequence. I love blue, but the tiny amount of blue? No, we don’t want to go there….at all……ever

  • Frangipani by collette yarns

  • Dark Eyed Junco Fade by Round Mountain Fibers. Dark-Eyed Juncos are a common bird in Central Oregon. The yarn goes from black to gray to white with a touch of red. Not sure what to make with it!

  • Angry Monkey by NuaSport red like the butt of a and monkey!!

  • One of my favorites is Crabby McCrabbypants. Knit a pair of socks for my daughter.

  • Porcupine Teeth by A Treehugger’s Wife Yarns— now Northern Bee Studio. Accurately orange.

  • Just found another gem in my stash. Blue Moon Fiber Arts sock yarn called Bet You Thought This Skein Was About You. I’m pretty sure that’s why I bought

  • “Milky Spite” from Dream in Color. My favorite is the wildly multicolor one the dyer named “Beige”.

  • Tiffany’s Got a Gun. I rather wondered who Tiffany might be and why on earth she had a gun! I did love the yarn and it made up into a lovely turquoise/lavender shawl.

  • Indigodragonfly had a OOAK colourway: The Angels Wanna Wear My Red Shoes. (Another one was Long Cool Woman in a Black Dress.)

  • Betty Draper Blues

  • my favorite yarn name is relatively tame but there is a reason. A limited edition yarn called “Miranda”. I had to have it as it is the name of my granddaughter.

  • I was test-knitting the Kites Throw for MDK and one of the colors (designed by Kaffe himself) was called “scree”. I thought this was a made-up word until I discussed it with a friend, and checked what she told me (just to be sure, not that I didn’t trust her), and sure enough, it is a real word! Its origins are British, and since it seems that Kaffe has adopted England as his home, this word isn’t such a surprise after all.

    • Scree is a geological word for loose gravel that accumulates on mountain slopes.

  • I love well water. I think it was a mad tosh colorway?

  • “Don’t Be A Karen” in Diva by Leading Men Fiber Arts

  • Grandpa’s Cheese Barn – named after a well-known landmark along I-71 in NE Ohio. (The colors matched their sign.)

  • Wonderland Heather. Very puzzling name.

  • I am really bad at remembering names of things, so although I have heard some good ones, I can’t remember any of them. The best ones are so spot on that you can picture the item it’s named after.

  • I have at least 3 sk of yarn named Poppy from different manufacturers and they are not even remotely the same color, but I think my favorite is a ball of chunky wool Rowan yarn called Scream. (I knit it into a Pussy Hat for a friend who admired it. I thought the pattern appropriate for the color name. )

  • Beer Goggles (a pale wheat-y yellow sock yarn). I made the socks for my husband!

  • Abby Loves Avocado Toast

    • The weirdest yarn I’ve ever seen has to be two balls of a fluffy gray yarn. I don’t know WHY it would be manufactured (Is there a new yarn trend that I’m missing here?) but it does make a good bunny.

  • “Ghost”. It’s a beautiful pale blue.

  • Burnt Lobster

  • Maybe not unusual but how in the world are you going to pick a color when it only has a number and no name

  • angels tears. Rowan of course

  • The yarn name is: ‘She Persisted’ by Knitted Wit Yarn. It is memorable for me because of all that has happened in the last two years. Need I say more?

  • Walking the Dog., Blue Moon Fiber Arts…you can imagine what that looks like! yes, I own a skein.

  • New Plimoth Worsted Wool in Goose Turd Green. It’s…accurate. The yarn is made by Harrisville Designs exclusively for the Plimoth Patuxet museum in Plymouth, MA. The whole range of colors are based on what was period-correct for the 17th century.

  • I have a yellow with speckles called Camping. How is that a color? The yarn reminds me of honeybees.

  • I think “Absinthe Minded” from Slipping Stitches on Etsy is pretty clever.

  • How about: 1) I C Spots; 2) Dancing Queen; or 3) Knit Graffiti for color names …

  • Touchy Feely Communication

  • Blood Runs Cold by Madelinetosh seems to do just that whenever I read the name. I do love the color, though.

  • I have very little hand dyed yarn but there is one skein sitting on my desk. I am looking for another yarn to go with it. It is called Water’s Edge. There is not water blues or mud browns in the skein. It is on a white base and after our last freak snow I think a better name would be Snow Covered Flowers.

  • A friend who knew she was dying asked me to knit a scarf for her to wear and she wanted it to coordinate with the suit she planned to wear forever in her casket. It was the lovely Froth scarf by Eleanor Yates in Rowan Kidsilk Haze, and the colorway for that softest pink was appropriately named Grace. I knit a small flower brooch for her sister out of the little yarn remaining of the skein that made the scarf.

  • Candy no one likes (hint candy corn)

  • I’ve always appreciated the mental image I get with “Cosmic wonder dust” 🙂

  • What the Flock Hand Dyed – Bad Ass, Smart Ass, Great Ass

  • Vampire Boyfriend

  • Joanna, of Stitching the High Notes, is currently making a sweater from Royal Bee Company yarn and the colorway is “Leigh Ann Says, Try the Gray Stuff, It’s Delicious”! It is a gray shade so I guess the name is descriptive, but it is definitely the most unusual name I have heard.

  • Violet, You’re Turning Violet, Violet

  • Goose turd green

  • Goose Turd Green.

  • When we were first married we painted the kitchen a bright yellow, hence called urine yellow. We had to move.

  • Best yarn color name by far, Goose Turd Green for a lovely yarn by Plimoth Plantation. And, yup, it definitely matched its moniker.

  • Rage

  • Glass bottom boat!

  • Color me curry

  • My ex husbands ashes…

  • I have to go with every color name that the folks at Indigo Dragonfly have ever come up with. They are hilarious. A few personal faves: “A Borg Christmas: Resistance is Festive;” “Grouching Oscar, Hidden Snuffy;” “Sargasm;” and “Already Frogged.”

  • Red Hot Chili Pepper

  • Plucky’s Slug Bug is rather memorable.

  • Scree

  • I still have a soft spot in my heart for Peace Fleece’s Lovely Grey. A perfect description!

  • I guess the weirdest color name I’ve ever heard was Titty Nipple Pink. I swear to you that’s what it was called. It was a long time ago in the 70’s. And it came closer that your green.

  • Unicorn farts

  • Hold up Beyoncé!

  • My favorite that I’ve bought (so far) was Pickle Juice! However, Leading Men Fiber Arts has some of the best names out there

  • My husband is a great supporter of my knitting. He went to Stitches West with me one year and surprised me with a beautiful skein called Don’t Get Stuck on Me. His smile was huge because he used to tell me that when we were dating. 35 years later…

  • I picked out a lovely skein that reminded me of a forest. When the fingerless mitts came out with much more militant patches of green, brown, and black, I finally read the yarn name: camouflage!

  • Angry Monkey is my all time favorite!

  • Sprinkle Spice Latte! It was the first Indy dyed yarn I ever bought! And Shel Silver, the most lovely gray yarn I’ve ever seen!

  • Clown Barf

  • I’m a big fan of Madelinetosh Wino Forever

  • Walk of Shame in bright sunrise colors.

  • It was hand dyed, and I can’t remember from where. But it was called, “All the Hamsters are Doing it”

  • A lovely yarn called Mosquito Coast.

  • Fuck 2016 was quite a favorite a few years ago! And any name from Indigodragonfly- as a Big Bang Theory lover, Rock Paper Scissors Lizard Spock is awesome. Also Cumberbacchanal is a current favorite. And who cans forget People Are Particularly Stupid Today and I Cannot Deal With Them Anymore.

  • Currently knitting with Burning Sensation by the hilarious babes at Spincycle

  • Murder Yarn from Seattle Sky Dyeworks. 🙂

  • Mermaids Don’t Run Track

  • A favorite dyer, SpaceCadet had “Juno Goes to Jupiter” with a complimentary colorway “And Brings Back Space Spores”

  • Between the lines.

  • It’s a joke not a d### dont take it so hard. Kind of rated R for the name.

  • Banksy! Very memorable. And love the socks I made with it.

  • Slutty pumpkin

  • I think it was called “back to work blues.” But that was before the pandemic. As an aside, I’ve always wondered about the Rowan color “treacle.” What is treacle? Some British thing probably. I love your musings, DG.

    • Yep, treacle is a close cousin of molasses but a heavier, darker almost-black colour.

  • Odo is the name of a yarn colorway I have purchased this month. Odo is the security cheif on the TV series Deep Space 9.

  • Blacklight Elvis by Meadowcroft dyeworks. Glows under blacklight. Really. Reminds me there is more than what I see at first glance

  • I always thought Oxblood (Rowan) was an odd name for yarn.

  • Melancholy blue

  • Goose Turd Green. Seriously. And it looked EXACTLY like its name, too!

  • Sock Obsessions Yarn has a couple of yarns with great names.
    Panty Droppers
    Sock Market Investor

  • ‘Even my attorney says, “Let it go” ‘ by Despondent Dyes.

  • Also, a Hedgehog Fibres colorway, called Pucker. It was a screamingly bright pink, like see-it-through-heavy-fog bright. If my LYS still has it when I go back, I’m going to buy it!

  • The name of the color was kitten. It was light gray with dark gray whisks. Very kitten like when knitted up:)

  • “Rest In Pieces” on Slasher Sock base from Direful Yarns

  • Like Toadally.
    Wearing right now, in fact!

  • Rest In Pieces on a Super Slasher base!

  • I have seen a yarn named Goose Turd Green

  • Garden gnomes and pink flamingos

  • My favorites are Already Frogged and 20,000 Lawyers Under the Sea by indie dyer indigodragonfly. And of course there is Beige, which is anything but that!

    • Indigo dragonfly has great names! My current favorite blue of theirs is Clamborghini.

  • My two favorite paint colors are “rain” and “antiquity”.

  • Fairly early in my stash-acquisition career, I ended up with a skein of Clown Barf. I no longer remember the dyer, but I do still have the yarn.

  • A friend wanted me to knit her a “cadet blue” scarf and I could never find yarn that color, at least to her satisfaction. I bought all kinds of yarn that I thought was cadet blue, but it never passed her inspection. I remain mystified about that color to this day.
    Thank you!

  • Rain In A Graveyard!

  • Dye for Yarn has the most unusual yarn names I have seen, like Rotten Pistachio Cream Macaroon and Peacock Butterfly Taking a Dirt Nap.

  • My favorite yarn color names are Salish Sea by West Coast Yarn and Hudson River Blue by Madeleine Tosh. My kids are Hudson and Salish!! ❤️

  • “The color of the marriage counselor’s rug”

  • My favorite was a sock yarn black with reddish highlights called “Lenore”. I believe this was a 100 Ravens yarn which makes the pun work. They currently have a color ‘Emo Cthulhu’

  • Outlander by madtosh. It’s a white shade & I think their red called tart. Why odd? Because how they thought it related to the show I have no clue. Maybe because there’s a lot blood. Oh, I just realized the baddie wears red and white uniform… but still, then name it after him!

  • Madelinetosh’s Venti Dragon Mocha!

  • Goose Turd Green

    • (Vi)laines Boulette Chausette sock have wonderful names. Love Notes in a Grey Smock, Pistachios at Aperitif Time, Farts and Furbelows to name but 3.

  • Within the past week I’ve gotten skeins called “It’s Different for Girls” by Pan Fran Knit Co. and “I Just Love to F***” by Old Rusted Chair!

  • I seem to remember (in one of your Field Guides maybe?) that you encountered a riotous clown-wig number called Beige?
    I’ve also come across a paint shade in the UK called Dead Salmon – I think it was a National Trust historic colour (and quite popular!)

    • Farrow & Ball is the paint company. They have many great names (Elephant’s Breath) and also many like the aforementioned ‘beige’ yarn that are the opposite of the actual color.

  • I love the red gradient by KnitCircus,
    Vampire Boyfriend. Also the yarn spun from the first shearing of my friend’s black alpaca. She named the colors after each animal, so I have skeins of POWER.

  • Hole in the Rock is probably the strangest blue colour name I have encountered as it does not tell you anything about the colour, unless you live in the neibouhood

  • Pyralid

  • Hi y’all! This is my favourite – Not the Foggiest (Crazy Zauberball) – I love this yarn (I love all Zauberball yarns, crazy or not), but Not the Foggiest is so apt it could be applied to the majority of my stash! Not the Foggiest 1, Not the Foggiest 2, Not the Foggiest 564… yes I am guilty of picking up yarn because it speaks to me – still don’t know what I will make with it, but it makes me happy just to look at it. I have banished the guilt a long time ago, especially when I realised that my stash is like having a private yarn shop 🙂

  • I confess that I rarely pay attention to or remember color names, I just love the colors! BUT, I do remember a lovely purple and grey hand-dyed skein from Space Cadet named Pretty Puddles–To my eyes, it and the scarf it turned in to are MUCH prettier than any puddle I ever saw.

  • “You Punched the Highlights Out Of Her Hair”, from Indigodragonfly Yarn.

  • Underwear party

  • Little Hood Riding Red

  • I love Old Maiden Aunt’s ‘Last Night’s Red Dress’. I don’t think that they do it anymore but it was a rich deep read merging to almost black in places. It made me think of someone waking up where they shouldn’t be with their glamorous red dress in a shameful heap on the floor!

  • Goose Turd Green by Harrisville Yarns

  • oddest yarn color I’ve seen had to be “Goose Turd Green”

  • Spawn of Scum

  • Cattywampus

  • “Time to bin the salmon dear” from Artyarns double mohair ombre

  • “There’s a Cowboy in my Boots”… Ancient Arts Yarns in Alberta Canada. Really, no kidding, had to have it just by the name! After all, I’d love to have a cowboy, just not sure I want him in my boots.

  • Fflwff – a suri alpaca from Triskelion yarn that does exactly what it says (in Welsh. Who needs vowels?)

  • Unicorn Farts (pinks and blues). Industrial sAccident (rainbow splatter on cream).

  • Hallowed Ground

  • Farmers Daughter yarn called Paul Newman. It is a brown grey.Why?

  • Lola Bean Yarn Company “Dude, That Might Be Infected”

  • Woodland Shenanigans by Legacy Arts.

  • There was an Indie color once, called,”When I bit her, I heard the ocean” or something like that! I think it was part of a Buffy series.

  • The color was named Trickery.

  • Kicked to the curb

  • Break Up Bangs. An enigma because we’ve all had them but no one wants them. Years ago an old friend of mine was going to paint his pick up truck. He was a great guy, terrific carpenter, and a lot of fun. He wanted green. So off we went to the car paint store to look for just the color he wanted. We found what seemed to be the perfect green but no. It wasn’t quite dark enough. You see he wanted a shade of green that matched the grass in his backyard when the sun was a high and a certain rock cast a certain shadow on the lawn. I kid you not. He was that specific. I said, “just add black.” Well you would have thought I suggested that he jump of the top of the Empire State Building. I got a lecture about professional car paint and how I had no idea what is was talking about. Needless to say, I was pissed. A few days later, when I had calmed down, he called to tell me he found the perfect color. Through clenched teeth, I asked him where he got it. His answer, “I just added black.” I thought my head was going to come to a point!!! Which is a long way of saying, I always wanted to do a series of colors called “I just added black.”

  • cormorant

  • Dream in Color has a colorway called “Damp Pillow.” Interpret as you will.

  • Devil’s Pool

  • Unicorn barf. Best name ever.

  • I haven’t been knitting long enough to have lots of fun color names but the best so far have been Venti Dragon Mocha or Dirty Harry….both Madeline Tosh. I’d love the color naming job!

  • Experimental Love Child, from Verdant Gryphon. They use this term for their “not quite ready” yarns from their dye batches.
    My love child (or children) was a speckled combination of white, orange, and brown that I never saw as a retail color.

  • “Lipstick On His Collar” by Despondent Dyes

  • Coffee Til Cocktails by Baad on Yarns, love this colorway!

  • Bumblebee butt

  • Swamp Thing

  • Cedarhouse Yarns has a color called “Old Car” and it looks exactly like that. It all the colors of a lovely old rusty truck or car. Grey, rusts etc. It’s lovely.

  • Fun article! And a very fun rabbit hole for us all to jump down. 🙂

    Lavender Lune – Rad AF (pink speckles);
    Three Irish Girls – Come As Ewe Are (gorgeous rainbow on dark grey!);
    Arkaik Fibers – All It Was Is a Dream (plum/taupe tweed); KnitCircus- Mistress of Myself (plum to light blue speckled gradient)

  • Hopscotch

  • Hate mail.

  • Unicorn Barf.

  • The one I will never forget is “Goosepoop”.

  • Firelights Ruddy Glow – very literary sounding

  • Spincycle’s Hot & Bothered, paired with Nymphaea and Stay Out of the Forest made a great wrap. And maybe even a good story.

  • memorable to me — kitchen sink! funny because i loved the yarn but hate doing dishes!

  • Itty bitty titty. Seriously. How that relates to colour I have NO idea. Also, it was a regular size skein of sock yarn.
    And it wasn’t blue. But I LOVE blue. (That is a not so subtle hint.)

  • Leading Men Fiber Arts: Dumb Luck

  • I am called by the Dream in Color yarn called Tex Mex (a dirty orange color). Since I love Tex Mex and live in Texas, well, yeah!

  • I purchased Harrisville Designs Nightshades in Insomnia at Ysolda Teague’s spot at the last Edinburgh Yarn Festival because I was so fascinated by the fact that when I took a pic of it in the shop it looked truly green but when I went to a window it was the black with the green overshot. Fascinating. I also love their color Fever Dream (red). I love sleep.

  • There are so many but the only one I can think of right now is “Hopper’s Shirt” from Stranger Things, a Madeline Tosh colorway. I’m fascinated by where dyers find the inspiration.

  • Not really a strange name but I love the imagery it brings to mind – both colors and place where I purchased it – Sunkissed.

  • I have a skein of sock yarn called “Storm”, and it’s fun to just look at and find all the (blue!) colors one can see in a storm.

  • ‘Walking down the street with a giant baby doll head’ was a name that must have need a giant label to fit the whole name.

  • So many great names; I had no idea! Was going to say Unicorn Farts but that’s been said…

  • Slutty Pumpkin

  • Purple Nurple is pretty funny from Lola Bean Yarn Co. It is a beautiful color as well.

  • Two favorites: Wish You Were Beer from Emma’s yarn, a lovely golden amber & Dirty Panther from Madeline Tosh, exactly the color you would imagine.

  • Plucky yarns has the color dirty blonde

  • I recently fell in love with a beautiful pale yellow fingering flecked with purple, blue, peach, lavender, and all sorts of other sweet colors. The name of this smooshfest? DIJON. As in, mustard. As in, “Pardon me, do you have any Grey Poupon?” I loved the colors so much, but knitting with it leaves a strange aftertaste that could have been avoided with a different name.

  • I would have to say the first time I encountered Lorna’s Laces colorway “Zombie BBQ” I straight up laughed out loud (startled the shop attendant, I’m pretty sure.)

  • White Birch’s “Nothing Says Screw You Like A Rainbow” – I thought it was funny and the yarn is a gorgeous sky blue with perfect striping rainbow.